Asbestos in Schools
The issue of asbestos in schools is a highly emotive subject with concerns ranging from evidence to suggest that asbestos in schools is not being effectively managed to the concern that raising the issues of asbestos in schools will cause panic amongst parents.
Research by ATAC has indicated that at a school level the compliance with the requirements of Regulation 4 of the Control of Asbestos Regulation is overall poor and ineffective. The Health an Safety Executives assessment of education authorities has resulted in a number being subject to visits and of these action has been taken against several authorities.
The concerns regarding asbestos is schools has been highlighted by teaching unions who are concerned that the number of teachers contracting asbestos related illnesses has steadily increased, while the instances of management failures has also increased. Experts within the asbestos sector are also concerned that as asbestos within schools ages and decays a potential risk associated with low level asbestos exposure increase. At present this matter is not being dealt with in the United Kingdom but in the United States recent funding has been made available to examine asbestos levels and the risk to students in schools.
Within the UK the key issue with regards to asbestos needs to be effective management supported by robust strategies and training. At Thames Laboratories we are able to assist both public and private sector schools in achieving compliance with the requirements of the Control of Asbestos Regulations.
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